16 FEBRUARY 1980

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Government in trouble

The Spectator

Government in trouble Margaret Thatcher became Leader of the Conservative Party, and thus of the Opposition, and thus Prime Minister-to-be, five years ago this week. The...

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The February Itch

The Spectator

Political commentary The February Itch Ferdinand Mount First, there is some distressing business to be disposed of. What follows will not be a pretty sight and those who...

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The Spectator

Notebook _ - :1 The Labour Party's contribution to the debate about whether or not to participate In the Moscow Olympics has been singularly feeble. The party's former Minister...

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Egyptian voices

The Spectator

Another voice Egyptian voices Auberon Waugh Luxor, Egypt Egypt is full of extravagant and absurd monuments to its past, but one of the most moving of them - as well as one...

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Feeding the sacred geese

The Spectator

Feeding the sacred geese Nicholas von Hoffman Washington Of the eight congressmen - seven represen4atives and the one senator - named in the Abscam sensation (the FBI's arab...

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Who talks of war?

The Spectator

Who talks of war? Henry Fairlie Washinfton 'Carter's victory in Maine tighter than expected' - so read the main headline in the Washington Post on Monday. Tighter than...

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Giscard's erratic course

The Spectator

Giscard's erratic course Sam White Paris Oddly enough, President Giscard's soft, near-neutralist line on Afghanistan is meeting with mounting criticism in France. I say oddly...

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The legacy of Gavrilo Princip

The Spectator

The legacy of Gavrilo Princip w w Richard West In Sarajevo last week, I went once again to that street corner beside the river where, on 28 June 1914, Gavrilo Princip fired...

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The fall of St Billy

The Spectator

The fall of St Billy Wilfred De'Ath Cambridge 'Have you ever raised sheep?' Billy Graham asked a congregation of bemused, predomninantly middle-class undergraduates in Great...

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Public dutyand union privilege

The Spectator

Public dutyand union privilege George Gale If their shop stewards have their way, 20,00() or more of the country's 30,000 water workers will strike from 25 February, in order...

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The erring female instinct

The Spectator

The erring female instinct Christopher Booker What are we to make of those strange Scenes in London last week, when groups of Wormen with strained faces paraded round the...

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The Spectator

Archbishopricru its Sir: The amiable woolliness of the Church of England (as seen by some of your correspondents) was given a thorough airing in three separate sections of your...

[Sir: Pace Christopher Booker (9 February),...]

The Spectator

Terminating Smiley Sir: Pace Christopher Booker (9 February), it is in the objective rather than the subjective shadows cast by Smiley's People that its fascination lies. It...

Mental health and ECT

The Spectator

Mental health and ECT Sir: It is unfortunate that Colin Brewer's letter (2 February) has been short-circuited by news items stating that ECT is carried out at Rampton without...

No time for abortion

The Spectator

Letters No time for abortion Sir: It appears that the chief peril facing the Corrie Bill to amend the abortion law is not that it will be rejected in the House of Commons, but...

[Sir: Now that you have allowed Christopher...]

The Spectator

Sir: Now that you have allowed Christopher Booker to void the bladder of his Jungian psychobabble over four and a half columns of your book pages, please may we have a proper...

Credit is not due

The Spectator

Credit is not due Sir: Unless my memory plays me false Mr Geoffrey Keating, in the letter you published last week, is wrong in giving me credit for the Tito-Stalin break of...

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The State of the Language Ed. Leonard Michaels and Christopher Ricks

The Spectator

Books Words and meanings Alan Watkins The State of the Language Ed. Leonard Michaels and Christopher Ricks (California This book is 609 pages long and consists of 80-odd...

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A Fantasy of Reason Don Locke

The Spectator

Pure reasoner ?m Nicolas Walter A Fantasy of Reason Don Locke (Rout- ledge £1 3.50) 'Hidden away in some old library or bookshop', begins this new biography of William...

Suicides Jean Baechler

The Spectator

On suicide Anthony Storr Suicides Jean Baechler (Blackwell £18) As Raymond Aron points out in his introduction, this book originates from a doctoral thesis, which may...

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John Ruskin and Rose La Touche: Her UnDublished Diaries of 1861 and 1867 Ed. Van Akin Burd

The Spectator

Ruskin's love Tanya Harrod John Ruskin and Rose La Touche: Her UnDublished Diaries of 1861 and 1867 Ed. Van Akin Burd (Oxford £6.95) Van Akin Burd has written a long and...

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Zanskar: The Hidden Kingdom Miche Peissel

The Spectator

Last lost land Jan Morris Zanskar: The Hidden Kingdom Miche Peissel (Collins & Harvill £7.95) Where would one find the King of Zangla? What is the Lumbo of Karsha? Why did...

The H. G. Wells Companion J. R. Hammond

The Spectator

Virgin field Benny Green The H. G. Wells Companion J. R. Hammond (Macmillan £12) 1 imagine that J. R. Hammond has enjoyed considerable happiness in the last few years, for...

Double blind

The Spectator

Double blind James Michie When I was young, myopic eyes Excused me well from seeing decay, And as for my demise So blurred was the small gap It seemed unfigurably far away....

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Prodigal Father: A Life of John Butler Yeats William M. Murphy

The Spectator

Free spirit A.N. Wilson Prodigal Father: A Life of John Butler Yeats William M. Murphy (Cornell £5) Henry Lamb considered John Butler Yeats 'by far the greatest painter...

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Solo Faces James Salter

The Spectator

Climbers Francis King SdIo Faces James Salter (Collins £5.50) The answer given by mountaineers when asked why thev want to risk their lives on this or that peak 'Because it...

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A nod to Cubism

The Spectator

Arts A nod to Cubism John McEwen It is not a very happy time for art pundits at the moment, not least here in England. First there was the intellectual humiliation of...

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The Rose The Human Factor 10

The Spectator

Cinema Separate boxes Charles Clover The Rose ('X' Leicester Square) The Human Factor ('AA') 10 CXI) A sobbing voice singing in the dark; a mournful crowd enters a...

Otello The Two Widows

The Spectator

Opera Total surrender Rodney Milnes Otello (Covent Garden) The Two Widows (Scottish Opera, New- The part that chance plays in the affairs of an international opera house...

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Appearances The Caucasian Chalk Circle Beecham

The Spectator

Theatre Facades Peter Jenkins Appearances (Mayfair)_ The Caucasian Chalk Circle (RSC, Warehouse) Beecham (Apollo) Perhaps Henry James should have been a French...

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Mote and beam

The Spectator

Television Mote and beam Richard Ingrams 1 spent an hour or so last week grappling with the new Le Carr6 novel, Smiley's People, but gave up. The poor fellow has completely...

City matches

The Spectator

Cricket City matches Alan Gibson It will take time to digest the lessons of this Australian season, but Mr Cedric Rhoades, the Lancashire chairman - who has a reputation for...

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Big fry

The Spectator

Postscript Big fry Patrick Marnham Without wishing to spoil the party this may be the moment to examine the ways in which different countries prepare for the Big One. In the...

Not in the rules

The Spectator

High life Not in the rules Taki New York There is one thing I am ready to wager my life on and it's the following: if Diogenes had actually found that honest man he looked...